Denver: Doug Herbert eliminations summary

Herbert happy to leave mile-high area after 1st-round loss Morrison, Colo., July 20, 2003 - It's a sure bet Doug Hebert didn't leave Bandimere Speedway Sunday humming the John Denver song "Rocky Mountain High", because his Denver-area visit was...

Herbert happy to leave mile-high area after 1st-round loss

Morrison, Colo., July 20, 2003 - It's a sure bet Doug Hebert didn't leave Bandimere Speedway Sunday humming the John Denver song "Rocky Mountain High", because his Denver-area visit was the opposite.

"I'm glad to be getting out of here," the Snap-on Racing Top Fuel dragster driver said after his first-round loss to David Baca in the Mile-High Nationals. "I was disappointed with the way the car ran all weekend."

It was one of those weekends. The car's engine dropped cylinders on two of Herbert's three qualifying runs and the engine quit when he hit the throttle on his final attempt. He started eliminations from the No. 12 spot and ran 5.169 seconds at 255.97 mph - his best run of the weekend - and lost to a 4.881 at 298.47 mph.

"We had a crankshaft key sheer off on our last qualifying run," Herbert said. "I've never seen that happen before in my 12 years of racing. I don't know how many new problems we can find. They haven't been the same problems twice. In this case, it was a 25-cent part that cost us the qualifying run."

There were a couple positives for Herbert and the team. They only have to wait until Friday to resume competition, this time in the Carquest Nationals at Seattle and they'll be leaving the thin air of this area as soon as possible. The Fram/Autolite Nationals follows at Sonoma, Calif., Aug. 1-3, with Herbert coming in as the defending champion.

Qualified: No. 12, 5.362 at 210.57 mph

First round: David Baca, 4.881 at 298.47 def. Herbert, 5.169 at 255.97

Pro winners: Larry Dixon, Top Fuel; John Force, Funny Car; Warren Johnson, Pro Stock.

Top Fuel Points: 1, Larry Dixon, 1227; 2, Doug Kalitta, 998; 3, Darrell Russell, 774; 4, Cory McClenathan, 714; 5, Tony Schumacher, 646; 6, Brandon Bernstein, 629; 7, John Smith, 621; 8, Doug Herbert, 618; 9, Dennis Baca, 594; 10, Rhonda Hartman-Smith, 514

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Series NHRA
Drivers Doug Herbert , Larry Dixon , John Force , Rhonda Hartman-Smith , Tony Schumacher , Doug Kalitta , David Baca , Cory McClenathan , Brandon Bernstein